Budhanilkantha

Located 8 kms from Kathmandu lays the creator of all life, the god who reclines on the cosmic sea. It is said from his navel grew a lotus and from the lotus came Brahma, who in turn created the world. The 5 meters long image of Vishnu lies on a most unusual bed: the coils of a multi-headed snake. It was sculpted during Licchavi period, probably outside the valley and laboursely dragged here.

The snake’s 11 hooded head rise protectively around Bishnu’s head. Narayan’s four hands hold four symbols of Lord Vishnu: a chakra (representing a mind), a mace (primeval knowledge), a conch shell (the four elements) and a lotus seed (a moving universe). Devotee visit here all along the day, bringing offerings which they hand to Brahman priest. The priests are the only ones allowed to walk around Lord Vishnu’s body. This image created in the 7th or 8th century is the most impressive, if not the most important, Lord Vishnu shrine in the country.

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